DH 40% pay cut - advice for household savings?

(88 Posts)
SunnyIntervals Sat 17-Aug-13 09:46:29

DH and I were pretty comfortable, but he lost his job and has started another a few weeks ago on a 40% pay cut (eek). Our income is still fine and i would never complain, but we are tied into a large mortgage and I have got I to bad habits of not counting the pennies too well.

Any ideas of ways we can save money that we may not have thought of? We are down to one car and I will give DH lifts to/from work, cancelling the gym, Sky and no more take away coffees or magazines.

Any other ideas gratefully received!

fossil971 Sun 25-Aug-13 18:56:50

We are in this situation unfortunately. Came down to earth with a bump grin. I work but DH's income has gone down by 75%. Great thread!

We reviewed all direct debits and have cancelled or not renewed lovefilm, couple of less-favourite charities, English Heritage, travel insurance etc.

The biggest thing is to make a budget and stick to it. Plan meals and all shopping ahead.

Only shop in Aldi for almost everything. And stick to basic stuff there.

Only go out for cheap outings (more of an issue in the summer)

Claimed all expenses that were backed up and paid in any cheques lurking round the house.

Best thing - take a packed lunch or picnic EVERYWHERE. I must have been spending a fortune in the canteen.

Got a smaller, cheaper car and renegotiated insurance (the loan is on our offset mortgage so we can pay it in small bites)

Take £20 less out of the cashpoint and make it last a week

Sorted online banking on my phone so I can always see my balance - rather sobering when tempted in the shops.

Unsubscribed to all my ebay alerts and marketing emails.
Sorted out some stuff to sell on ebay.
Don't take credit card out of house.

Stopped buying toiletries until I've used everything up and going to hairdresser except cheap trim.

Love your breadmaker - you can get lovely Allinsons flour in Aldi and get an Allinsons tin of yeast from somewhere. The main thing is it cuts down on your top-up shops, which are never for "just" bread. And it's a touch of luxury AND you can do two lovely big pizza bases in it too.

apprenticemum Sun 25-Aug-13 19:28:36

I know it sounds a bit sad but I get quite a sense of satisfaction from not being wasteful and making the pennies stretch. I think it does us all good to get a bit of a wake up call from time to time. It sounds like you have the bit between your teeth, rather than whine about your situation you are doing something positive and for that, I aplaud you.smile

fossil971 Sun 25-Aug-13 19:48:34

apprenticemum, I wouldn't feel bad. There are (hardcore) people on the Moneysavingexpert website who've made it their life's mission!

I think with the world changing as it is, we will all be having to be a bit more frugal in the future so we might as well get in some practice.

BlackberrySeason Tue 17-Sep-13 19:26:39

I am the op but have nc!

Just wanted to share how I am getting on in case it inspires anyone else going through similar.

These have been our biggest savings:

We have switched to making all our own bread, which because of our previous over-use of the lovely but pricey local bakery, is saving us £400 per year! The bread is very tasty too!

Neither of us are buying any more lunches to eat which is saving us £1,000 a year. The packed lunches with homemade bread are lovely and healthier - dh is much slimmer and prefers the packed lunches.

Cancelled Sky - going to terrestrial channels only which saved over £400 per year.

Cancelling gym for us all is saving £1,200 per year.

Switching electrical suppliers is saving £75 per year.

Other savings:

Switched to powder rather than liquitabs
Switched a lot of our regular shopping down to cheaper products.
Eating our way through what we've got tucked away in the freezer
Using library instead of buying books
Only using cheaper petrol stations and planning ahead to make sure we fill up at those!!
Planning all Xmas gifts ahead using Reastie'a fab thread!
When we visit people taking homemade cake or bread rather than a bottle of wine - people have reacted with great enthusiasm to this and I may do biscuits for the next few times.
Collecting up and spending our loose change before breaking into notes
Switching lights off every time when leaving rooms
Bought DS's clothes on eBay.

Any further saving ideas fretfully received of course, but thanks so much to you all again for all the tips so far smile

BlackberrySeason Tue 17-Sep-13 19:32:15

Not fretfully - phone blush - gratefully!!

lightningstrikes Tue 17-Sep-13 20:41:19

I have just started batch cooking and freezing with menus from here. It is saving us quite a bit of money and time. Plus I don't have to think about what we are going to eat most of the time as it is just there. I'm totally converted.

everydayaschoolday Thu 19-Sep-13 02:39:47

The autum National Childbirth Trust (NCT) sales are approaching. Google NCT for your nearest groups. You do not have to be a member to sell or buy, and I get lots of good quality clothes at bargain prices for the kids. I'm also a seller, and generally make around £80 at each of the spring and autumn sales. It's good if you need to have a clear out of (decent condition) kids clothing, and especially toys for the autumn sale, as people are buying for christmas.

valiumredhead Fri 20-Sep-13 20:59:05

Aldi - so much cheaper than Tesco. For example their microwave rice pouches are 49p, Tesco own brand is 99p.

Don't mean to be pernickety but if you are watching the pennies why would you buy a microwave rice pouch? Just get a bag of rice for a pound that works out about 10p or less per portion.

stargirl1701 Fri 20-Sep-13 21:16:32

eBay for Polarn O Pyret when you need bigger clothes for your DC.

ancientbuchanan Fri 20-Sep-13 22:03:14

I am no expert but if you need something like a piece of furniture, consider freecycle. We gained hugely from our street handing on games and clothes between young families, bikes too. Everyone learned on the same old tatty bike that changed hands at decreasing amounts.

I use my slow cooker. Cheaper cuts of meat are fine.

Use tinned tomatoes to cook with, much cheaper and no one will notice.

Two concepts, new to you, and make do and mend , pretty much say a lot of it.

But also, get from the library the book food for free, and see what you can get from it. Also from your library discover the places to go that are free, to give yourselves a break. Develop new interests, preferably ones that are free, or only involve travel, bird watching, walking, cycling, star gazing, architecture and art, lots if art galleries are free or v cheap, bell ringing, choirs, whatever.

Think about saving for a holiday. You can do some stay cations but most people like getting away at some point. Think about what gives you pleasure without being expensive. If you enjoy camping that is an option.

Have a money box for spare change.

Start having an emergency fund. A few pounds set aside a week will make you feel better. And bode that is at the level you can cope with, start a savings account.

A revolutionize your present giving. I have just given my ma a lovely Thai silk kimono from a charity shop.. she is in hospital and it made her day. Cost to me, 5 l.. she doesn't know, it's new to her and she is delighted.

Get to know your neighbours. We share garden produce, herbs, baby for got each other, help out on the plumbing. I gave the streets set if drain pipes, but I get the strong chaps to use them or help me on the roof. Saves s fortune in calling people out.

Turn the heating down, put it on first thing in the morning and then half an hour before you come home st night. Wear a vest ( I know) and sweaters. .
Pull the curtains as soon as it gets dark to keep the warmth in. If your house is draughty, get curtains ( eBay obv or charity shop) to hang over doors and make draught excluders.

Hot water bottles. Make your own covers if you need them.

Go to bed sooner...

ancientbuchanan Fri 20-Sep-13 22:04:30

Sorry about spelling, o. Phone.

wrigglebum Sat 21-Sep-13 06:26:48

For bulk purchases of spices, lentils, chickpeas etc, the Asian supermarkets will be much cheaper than even Aldi etc. Going veggie will be cheaper, but if you fancy meat you can really stretch out mince with lentils and/or some oats. Much healthier too.

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